|To listen to these audio clips, you must Real Player installed on your computer. You can download Real Player's free software here.|
Tommy Bowden Press Conference (35:30)
On the excitement of the Clemson-South Carolina rivalry:
"There is kind of an electricity that you feel. We'll probably feel it more in practice today and as the week goes on. There will be more of a buzz around. We (the coaches) come in early and don't get out on campus or go downtown. So we kind of get secluded in the office. I'm sure that the players will feel a lot more of the electricity, simply by being among the students and the general public more so than the coaches."
On the pressure of beating South Carolina to get to a better Bowl game:
"The rivalry is the biggest factor. It's bigger than trying to maintain a winning record and what bowl we go to. It's the #1 priority."
On preparing for two different Carolina quarterbacks:
"I don't think that will be a big issue because both are similar physically. I don't think their offense changes that much with either one in the game. Both have good running skills and they utilize their quarterback as a runner kind of like we did last year with Woody Dantzler. Whether #5 (Dondrial Pinkins) or #9 (Corey Jenkins) is in the game will not change our defensive philosophy."
On the significance of beating South Carolina this weekend:
"If you lose, words like mortuary and obituary come to mind. Around here, it's a significant game. Personally, football is important and it's a big part of my life. It is not the most important, however. It's not going to initiate a slashing of the wrist or something of that nature. But it's a big game. In the coaching profession, this type of game is your largest game."
Overall feelings of this season:
"There have been some disappointments. But, unless you go undefeated, there will always be disappointments. Expectations are high, but you want to coach in a place where the expectations are like that. You don't want to coach at a place with low expectations. The biggest disappointment this year is probably the N.C. State game. It was all the hype and national TV against an undefeated team and we came out and did not perform very well. I have documentation to back that up."
On the play of freshman cornerback Justin Miller:
"He's as good as I've ever seen as a true freshman, and I'm hearing that comment from other coaches around the league. He's not so much a good freshman corner, but it just a good corner period. He's got a mean streak and is real aggressive. You can see why people recruited him as a wide receiver. He's got great running skills, has good hands and is very mature. I wish we had a bunch more like him. He's had a very good year and has done it against good competition and with style. He's been very impressive. This spring we will take a look at also using him on offense."
On the running attack of South Carolina:
"They are pretty good at running the ball. They've had some success this year. I think they had a good first half against Tennessee's good defense. And they also had a good first half against LSU. I'm sure they will try to run the football, and we will too. Everybody tries to go out there and see what they can do with the running game. Andrew Pinnock is an awful good back, he's been playing since he was a true freshman. Their quarterback is another running back. They have a similar scenario as to us last year, where the quarterback running the ball can present a little bit of a problem."